Salam Fayyad Resigns: Peace Process On Hold
Sources have reported that Palestinian Prime Minister Salam Fayyad offered his resignation to President Abbas early Thursday morning. As a member of the moderate Fatah Party, Fayyad was a constant light in the darkness that clouded Palestinian governance; leadership headed by Hamas, a group that the United States denounces as a terrorist organization. As described by President Obama, Fayyad was one of the true partners for peace in the region. His leadership and ability to see solutions to this conflict were constantly commended by both American and Israeli leaders. Understandably, his resignation comes at much displeasure to both Israelis and Americans who are hoping to seek an end to this conflict. With Fayyad gone, the possibility for peace is drastically diminished.
The pessimism is warranted. Fayyad was a constant nuisance and counterbalance to the Hamas regime. Although President Abbas might not accept his resignation, as he has denied them in the past, many insiders believe that he will. Furthermore, many believe this resignation might be the precursor of the long-awaited unification of Fatah and Hamas governing the West Bank and Gaza Strip respectively. If the alignment takes place, Fayyad is unlikely to keep his position regardless.
To many within Fatah and Hamas, Fayyad is seen as a western sympathizer. Additionally, Hamas constantly points to Fayyad as a friend of Israel, aiding them in their blockading efforts. It is these sentiments, and the deteriorating relationship between Abbas and Fayyad, that lead one to believe that his tenure has come to an end. This comes as unfortunate news for the West, Israel, and the peace process all together.
Without a real ally on the Palestinian side, one that is willing to trust the Israelis and the Americans, the peace process is doomed. This seems inevitable amid reports that Abbas and Fatah are deciding to unite with Hamas, an organization fueled towards the destruction of the state of Israel. This could hurt the relationship between President Abbas and the United States, as well as the president's recent increased criticism of the prime minister and lack of negotiating credibility on the side of Hamas. It is clear that with Fayyad gone, the future looks a bit dimmer in the region.